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How to start an exercise regime from your Denver Physical Therapist

April 10, 2019

Spring has arrived and with summer months just around the corner you might be considering starting a new exercise regime. Starting a new exercise regime is the best think you could possibly do for your health - exercise will help prevent diseases, improve sleep, increase coordination, and release endorphins that leave you feeling happy and content for hours after exercise. You might be wondering how to start a new exercise regime - we have tips from your Denver physical therapist. 

Current State Evaluation
Take a few moments to evaluate where you currently are in your fitness journey. Doing so includes a few different things: 
What’s your resting heart rate? 
What’s your heart rate when you feel that you are at max effort?
How long does it take to run a mile?
What is your Body Mass Index (BMI)? 
How much do you weight? What are your measurements?
It’s important to know where you are starting so that you can measure progress as you continue your fitness journey. Weight is not always an indicator of fitness improvements, so be sure to keep tabs on all of your base numbers as time goes on. 

It might be helpful to snap some photos of where you are at now as well. It’s hard to see the progress you’ve made day-to-day, but it can be easier to see your progress with photos that are taken 30, 60 and 90 days apart. 

Your Plan
Next it is time to formulate your plan - but you need to figure out a few things before doing so. What are your fitness goals and how fast do you want to reach them? Knowing where you want to be will keep you motivated and focused on your fitness goals. If you are unsure where to start, contact Peak Physical Therapy and Wellness, we can help. 

Getting Started
When you have a fitness goal in mind and are ready to achieve it, it’s easy to want to get there as quickly as possible. That might lead to over exercising, extreme dieting, injury, and burnout. Take starting your new exercise regime slow and progress with caution. A professional can help guide you in this aspect, and help ensure that you are taking the right steps to meet your long term fitness goals. 

Challenging your body will result in change, punishing it and pushing yourself too hard immediately will not result in anything! When you are just getting started, be sure to plan variety into your workouts as you can. Take your time, and do exercises right - even if it means less reps! Doing an exercise right will be far more beneficial then doing them wrong.  Variety will keep things interesting, keep your body from getting complacent, and ensure you are ready to go for your workout. 

When you are getting started with your workout make sure you leave enough time for recovery. Your body needs recovery, particularly when starting a new exercise regime. Address your concerns for recovery with the professional who will work with you to achieve your fitness goals. It’s okay to be honest and open with your fears, and hesitations. 

The next part you need to consider is what you will be doing to achieve your fitness goals - then secure the necessary memberships and equipment. Are you going to be swimming three times a week? Unless you have a pool at your home, you will need to get a gym membership for a club that has an accessible pool. What about weights? If you are looking to lift weights, you will either need to purchase a gym membership or the weights needed to accomplish your workout at home. No matter what, if it’s been awhile since you’ve worked out you will most likely need to invest in a new pair of athletic shoes. You don’t have to go to the gym to get your physical activity in - some people just prefer it.

Your Routine
You have a plan, and you’ve gotten started. Be sure to stick with your routine. Having a routine will help to form healthy habits and keep you on track to reach your fitness goals. Not only is an exercise routine essential, but having a routine with your diet will help as well. 

Your Diet
No matter your fitness goals, a healthy diet will be essential in reaching them. No matter how dedicated your exercise regime is, you can’t outrun a poor diet. Consult with a healthcare professional as to what you should be eating to fuel your body and reach your goals. Diet needs will vary person to person and rely heavily on what goals you are trying to reach and accomplish. Consider talking to your healthcare professional about the benefits of supplements - sometimes these can lessen recovering time and make it easier on your muscles post-workout.

Don’t Give Up
It will take time to see results. Don’t give up on your progress and your goals if you don’t see anything within a week or two. Consistency is key, and it will be the driving force behind being successful in your fitness journey. Remember why you started your fitness journey, and stay positive! Great things take time, and you won’t regret putting in the effort now.

Measure Your Progress
Remember how we talked about setting goals and taking base measurements? It’s important to measure your progress every few weeks. Run that mile again, re-calculate your BMI, take your heart rates, and write down your latest measurements. Measuring your progress will keep you motivated and moving towards your goals. 

As always, be sure to connect with a healthcare physician before starting a new exercise regime or changing your diet considerably. If you are looking to improve your physical health situation and are in need of physical therapy due to an accident or other physical ailments, contact Peak Physical Therapy and Wellness today and we will be happy to assist you with your first steps towards recovery. Our extensive team of qualified physical therapists and specialists go above and beyond the call of duty to provide the highest quality treatment in the industry.